mark leidnernerve_bios_5.html


Potatoes rotate slowly through the sky:

giant, earthen barges,

majestic spuds, gently turning, shedding dirt

silently, like space stations

or clouds, brown and organic

and when the atmosphere gets too potatoey

it rains tater tots

that stupid people immediately spit out

after catching them in their mouths

because they’re too hot,

fresh from the sky.

Sometimes it lightnings French fries

and hails twice-baked potatoes

shooting through our windows like brimstone

breaking apart along the shards of glass

still sticking out of the sills

streaking everything in the living room

with scalding cheese

and the hot, white fluff of the inner-potato.

Then one afternoon you look up

and the whole sky has gone this totally au gratin

hue, as the wind dies down

and the bottom drops out

of a cumulonimbus

like a fortress of carbs

and it curly-fries tornadoes

peeling back the landscape’s skin, flinging

livestock skyward, and around

like potato salad in a blender

homelessing townsfolk, shredding

belongings, threading telephone

poles through classrooms like toothpicks

through steamed new potatoes

turning trailer parks to hashbrowns

flattening lakeside mansions to latke

reducing the courthouse to a pulverized

pinch of chips and salt in the bottom

corner of the crinkly bag of the city.

Then later that night, the wind dies down

again, and the full moon shines

down on the rubble like an eerily single

scalloped potato,


for a whole casserole of others

set against the high, giant darkness

with starch like stars

and you feel like you’re standing

inside the giant, invisible pomme de terre

that is the clear night sky.

Then one day you wake up

and walk outside

and the whole world is covered in a layer

of mashed potatoes

and everything is quiet and bright

the sunlight glowing on it like butter

but soon that layer will melt.

Even now it has begun

revealing a whole

season’s worth of debris beneath

the snow, I mean mashed potatoes

as all the streams of meltwater trickle

all throughout the town.

It’s Spring.


The imagination

like a brain-attic

floats where one


see—only images

fallen from it.